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Orange, Movistar and Vodafone close the auction of 700 MHz for 5G: this is how they distribute the spectrum

A record investment of 1,010 million for three identical 20 MHz packages, only differentiated by the committed dates of deployment.

Surely by now you will all have made jokes about the vaccine and 5G, but the only reality is that the deployment of next-generation connectivity is not being all that fast that we would like in Spain, especially when no operator still uses 5G deployments properly said, which will finally bring us all the possibilities of the new generation

In any case, it is more than true that 5G will be the protagonist of the decade, so while Vodafone begins to talk about its first tests with 5G SA and Orange or Yoigo boast of their deployments -with the French operator as the best-, the Government of Spain the auction process of the radioelectric spectrum finally ends which had already been delayed for too long due to the pandemic.

5G technology continues with its massive implementation throughout the entire planet.

Obviously, we are talking about the new auction proposed to distribute band 12, which is none other than that of the 700 Mhz that were released from Digital Terrestrial Television to serve as a base of coverage in 5G, and that has been granted in equal parts to the three major operators for a price of 1,010 million euros with 20-year licenses extendable up to 40 years.

With MásMóvil and its brands absent from the auction, both Telefónica, Vodafone and Orange have acquired 20 MHz packages to bring 5G coverage to practically the entire territory.

5G in Spain: operators, rates, coverage map and current situation

Why is the deployment of 5G on 700 MHz so important?

Surely many of you will be wondering what need was there to release more spectrum and grant it to telecommunications operators, but the explanation is very simple and lies in physics same of the propagation of electromagnetic waves.

It is very easy to understand that the higher the frequency the wave will be weaker in the face of obstacles, so the implementation of 5G on a 700 MHz band will allow not only to open the doors definitively the model of the new connectivity, which does not require 4G LTE network hardware to function, but also will offer a greater range of coverage being less sensitive to obstacles and spreading more robustly in space.

By extension also indoor coverage will be improved, as the waves will be able to better pass through walls and architectural elements, and all this will allow 5G coverage base be more stable so that the terminals can camp on this network without having to continuously jump to 4G or 3G taking our battery with them.


Rural areas are often the most affected by lack of coverage, and will benefit the most.

This is how the deployment will be after the auction, and this is how the radio spectrum in Spain remains

As we have already mentioned, in this auction the distribution has been equitable with 20 MHz for each one of the participating operators, differentiating the prices in the times when each company commits to deploying 5G coverage about this newly awarded band.

So that, Movistar has kept the cheapest package paying 310 million, although in return you will have to offer 5G coverage before 2025 at least in all municipalities with more than 20,000 inhabitants, as well as in airports, seaports, train and bus stations, highways and highways.

Orange and Vodafone have paid 350 million euros each, with the condition of reaching the municipalities with more than 50,000 inhabitants, so your goals are obviously more manageable. In any case, no one will force them to that roadmap, and the battle to arrive earlier and convince users is likely to imply that deadlines are effectively shortened.

For now, Orange will be the operator with the most specific spectrum for 5G networks, although this is something that will converge and equalize as the older networks are shut down.

There have also been three 5 MHz blocks that have been left deserted in the absence of bids, which will, finally, Orange is the operator with the most specific spectrum for 5G today, something that will be corrected over time as the 2G and 3G networks are turned off, if this happens one day, thus freeing up more bands to radio in 5G in all cases.

In case you want to keep an eye on it, the radioelectric spectrum for telecommunications in Spain, it will be distributed as s:

Radio spectrum for mobile telephony in Spain
Frequency 700 MHz 800 MHz 900 MHz 1,800 MHz 2,100 MHz 2,600 MHz 3,500 GHz
Band 12 twenty 8 3 1 7; 38 78
Technology 5G 4G 2G & 3G 2G & 4G 3G & 4G 4G & 5G 5G
Movistar 20 MHz 20 MHz 30 MHz 40 MHz 30 MHz (FDD) & 5 MHz (TDD) 40 MHz (FDD) & 10 MHz (FDD *) 100 MHz
Vodafone 20 MHz 20 MHz 20 MHz 40 MHz 30 MHz (FDD) & 5 MHz (TDD) 40 MHz (FDD) & 20 MHz (TDD) 90 MHz
Orange 20 MHz 20 MHz 20 MHz 40 MHz 30 MHz (FDD) & 5 MHz (TDD) 40 MHz (FDD) & 10 MHz (TDD) & 10 MHz (FDD *) 110 MHz
MoreMobile 30 Mhz 30 MHz (FDD) & 5 MHz (TDD) 10 MHz (FDD *) 80 MHz
Vodafone announces the deployment of the first 5G SA network in Spain

Related topics: 5G, Operators

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